The Art of Relaxation: Mandala Painting

The beauty of mandala painting goes beyond the mesmerizing colors and dots; the technique of mandala painting, rooted in a rich history, is also proven to relax the body and mind. 

History of Mandalas

Mandala art first appeared in the 4th century in India inside Buddhist monasteries. Buddhist monks created mandalas because the meditative process helped train their minds to become more enlightened. Similarly, in present times, mandala art making is a great activity for those of us looking to unwind through the artistic process

All mandalas are circles contained within a square and arranged into sections that are all organized around a single, central point. There are thousands of patterns one can follow, but here is a simple way to get started and see if mandala painting is for you. 

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Supplies needed: One mini canvas, a paintbrush, a pencil, acrylic paints, a dotting tool, a ruler, paper towels and a cup of water. 

  1. First you will need your ruler, pencil and canvas. Using the ruler, find the midpoint of the canvas. Use the pencil to lightly draw a line through the middle of your canvas, and then draw along the diagonal to connect the corners. When you are finished, there should be eight lines coming out from the midpoint.

  2.  Next, prepare your acrylic paints. Dip your pencil’s eraser into your desired color use it to make your central dot. Wipe the pencil eraser off using a paper towel when finished.

  3. Now, grab your dotting tool. Dip one of the tips into a different color paint and make a ring of smaller dots around the central dot.

  4. Switching between the dotting tool and pencil eraser, continue to switch colors and sizes as you expand your painting. Create a repetitive pattern around your central dot.

  5. Next, use the dotting tool to create lines of dots both on and between the pencil lines. Creating these dot lines helps extend the pattern across the canvas. Continue switching between small and large dots using both the pencil eraser and dotting tool until you’ve filled the entire space.

Once you have filled your canvas with the repeated patterns, let it dry and then display on your easel and enjoy! 

Related Books and Resources

Looking for more mandala-inspired art? 

A Year of Stone Painting

Mandala for the Inspired Artist

Mandala Zentangle

Modern Crochet Mandalas

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